Everything posted by Rachette
The Law Society of BC does not have any salary requirements between articling students and their principals. An articling principal can pay you nothing if you want to article under him/her. I don't have any other option other than to find another articling principal, which is not easy particularly for NCA students like myself as articling student positions are hard to come by.
Thanks for the comments. I suspect that my having an independent contractor status is for my boss's financial benefit and nothing more. He is presently paying his support staff, including me, minimum wage as an employee. If I switch to an IC contract he says he would deduct the 1/2 portion of my PLTC fee from my minimum wage salary over the nine month articling period, effectively being able to pay me less than the statutory requirement for employees. The IC contract would be between the firm and me, and the articling agreement is of course, signed between him, me, and the law society. His reasons are that he was on an IC contract when he was an articling student and had to pay for the whole PLTC fee himself (although I suspect his principal paid him more than minimum wage as an articling student). He said that this is how it is normally done between firms and its articling students.
I am a law graduate who has been working as a paralegal with a small, newly formed law firm in Vancouver for the past few months. My boss is the only resident lawyer but there are a few other lawyers who have their own sole practices but associate with my boss's firm as independent contractors. There are a handfull of us who are employed full-time as support staff. When I was hired my boss knew I was looking for an articling position while I worked as a paralegal. To cut to the point, my boss is recently in a position where he can and will be my articling principal. However, he had told me that he will pay only 1/2 of the PLTC fee and wants me to switch my employment status from "employee" to "independent contractor" as a condition to letting me article with his firm. I would be his first articling student. He has not given me a clear reason why he wants me to sign an agreement to be an independent contractor with his firm in addition to the articling application I would submit to the BC Law Society, other than this is how it is usually done here in Vancouver with articling students. I am not sure if this really is the case and why. Does this sound right? And can anybody advise on what type of contract a law firm usually signs with the articling student?